I’m often asked why I don’t have a guacamole recipe on my site. I reckon the simplest answer is because I don’t have a recipe for guacamole. Instead, I just add some ingredients to a smashed-up avocado and call it a dip.
When my mom was in the liturgical nacho stage of her life (so-called because she made her daily lunch of nachos always the exact same way) she’d whip up a batch of guacamole to go with them. She totally cheated, however, as she mashed an avocado with bottled hot sauce.
My mom can do many things very, very well, but I have to admit that this guacamole was not the best I’d eaten in my life. (And, for the record, she insists that she no longer makes guacamole this way.)
Guacamole is all about freshness and using a bottled hot sauce is anathema to this underlying principle. While you want the avocado to be the star, the other ingredients need to be heard as well, and nothing is louder than the crunch of fresh chiles, the tang of lime juice and the bite of fresh garlic.
There’s also the problem of bottled salsa having tomatoes as a base. I’m a firm believer that tomatoes shouldn’t be in guacamole; the texture is just wrong. Tomatoes are too juicy and soft and I want my accents to the avocado to be firm. I realize most people would disagree with me, but that’s OK as that’s probably the best thing about guacamole—everyone makes guacamole the way that they like it.
Take my uncle, for instance. He stirs in a heaping spoonful of mayonnaise into his guacamole, which he swears makes it super creamy. Then there’s a friend who’s been known to add sesame seeds to her guacamole, which is a subtle yet surprising accent. Obviously, the ways to make guacamole are infinite.
So, I’m happy to share with you how I make my guacamole, but what I really want to know is how you make your guacamole.
2 ripe Hass avocados, peeled and cut in half
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 Serrano pepper, diced
1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
Juice from 1/2 a lime
Salt to taste
Mix all the ingredients together either with a fork in a bowl or in a Mexican mortar and pestle (molcajete) until desired consistency. If you’re using a molcajete, there’s no need to crush the garlic. And you can add another Serrano pepper if you like it extra hot.
Serves two to four.